Donkey Derby

We were walking yesterday in glorious spring weather near a little village called Unac, quite near the winter sports area of Ax-les-Thermes.  Just outside the village, we spotted donkeys: eight of them.  They spotted us too.  They came to say ‘hello’.  And then they followed us.

Every field for miles about was theirs by the looks of things, because every time we rounded a corner, or scrambled higher up the craggy path, thinking we’d at last said our ‘goodbyes’ to them, there they were again, peering over the fence and hoping for carrots, which we failed to offer.

Someone remembered that they must come from La ferme aux ânes, in which case their job is to carry the baggage of any hikers who care to hire them.  But they weren’t working then.  Like us, they were enjoying the first day of spring.  They cheered our afternoon along no end.

11 thoughts on “Donkey Derby”

  1. I nearly stopped reading when I got to ‘glorious spring weather’. It’s freezing here, we’ve had snow, bitter winds and the forecast is no better. Hmmm. But back to donkeys. I’ve always wanted a couple but Andrew put his foot down as he had them as a child and,according to him, spent half his life bringing them back after they escaped. Apparently they perfected ‘tuck & roll’ under the fence.


  2. Talk of the sun went to my head! Meant to say that I’ve just finished reading ‘Downhill all the way’ (Hilary Macaskill & Molly Wood) who walked with donkeys on the Stevenson Trail in the Cevennes. A delightful book.


  3. I love donkeys too! With a friend we plan to walk one day on, maybe, the south part (round Florac) of the Stevenson Trail in the Cevennes with donkeys carrying our luggages. There is an Association “Sur le chemin de Stevenson” which can give informations. Before I must read Stevenson’s “Voyage avec un âne ds les Cévennes” and also “Downhill all the way” proposed by your friend! I’ll look out for it!


  4. And if you haven’t read it already, look out for Pilgrim’s Road by Bettina Selby. Weren’t you thinking of walking the Santiago de Compostela road?


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